The McGilvra Elementary Parent Teacher Association is seeking community support through donations for its biggest fundraiser of the year, the Annual Fund.
Through February, people can donate to help support critical programs funded by the PTA for the next school year.
Lynne Morris, McGilvra PTA fundraising chair, said people can donate throughout the year, but the Annual Fund campaign wraps up Feb. 28, which gives the PTA members time to determine how much money is available for different programs.
“Public schools are not fully funded, so the private support that the PTA is able to raise and give back to the school does make a significant difference in the education that the children of McGilvra do receive,” Morris said.
The PTA gives the money raised from the Annual Fund to the school to supplement or fund programs and services children otherwise wouldn’t receive, she added.
This year, the PTA wants to raise $140,000 through the Annual Fund, with $200,000 the goal for the entire year to maintain current funding and account for 5 percent inflation for next school year, Morris said. Currently, the Annual Fund has raised about $67,000 in donations, about $78,000 including matches.
She said the money raised goes toward several important programs and positions.
The PTA helps support the school’s art program and art teacher so all the children have access to art. It also funds the reading and math specialist for children who need extra help, as well as an academic intervention specialist.
“The academic support I think is critical in making sure kids don’t get lost and that they get the help they need to excel now and into the future,” Morris said.
This year, the PTA helped bring back an after-school enrichment program, which provides a variety of different classes for parents to enroll their children. The classes have a fee, but the PTA organized all of them. Morris said the PTA budget also supports a staff member who helps children get to where they need to go after school.
“These funds are critical funds that are used for the school, so if the time came that we were not able to meet our goal it would likely mean we would have to cut our services and some of the other things we support at the school,” Morris said.
She said people shouldn’t worry about the amount they donate and encourages people to be as generous as they can.
“It doesn’t have to be a big donation,” Morris said. “Small donations do make a difference, as well.”
This is the third fundraiser the PTA hosts every year. Members host a move-a-thon in the fall and an auction in the spring.
Morris said, to show that the McGilvra Elementary’s 219 students are good neighbors, the PTA frequently organizes neighborhood cleanups. In January, a group of them went to Washington Park Arboretum and cleaned up a substantial amount of garbage that people had left. Cleanup efforts also take place at Madison Park and the athletic field next to McGilvra, which hosts neighborhood club soccer practices and games.
To donate to the McGilvra Elementary Annual Fund, go to www.tinyurl.com/McGilvra2022-23.